Yep. But first. Ever heard of Agora Financial? They’re a private publishing company out of Baltimore, Maryland, with a gang of websites centered around stocks, investing, personal finance, etc.
If not, don’t feel bad. Most people haven’t. Anyhow…
These websites pull in millions of readers who enjoy the content, many of whom will opt-in to email newsletters for additional info and free gifts. Some of the emails they’ll get sent, of course, will promote books, courses, seminars, and premium newsletters… usually via long sales letters (plus or minus a video) written by one of their in-house copywriters.
Online marketing 101, right? Standard stuff. Only, Agora does it better than anyone. By far! To the tune of one billion dollars a year! (Yep, with a B.)
It’s not uncommon for them to send an email promoting one of their new products; that email takes interested peeps over to the sales page; and that single sales page does anywhere from $500k to $15 million in a matter of days.
More shocking is the fact that the dudes writing this piping hot copy? Are just Average Joes. (It’s true.)
Agora Financial doesn’t look for copywriters to hire. They look for voracious readers who can be turned into copywriters. Their theory being: heavy readers are more likely to come up with big ideas. And that grammar and structure and all that jazz doesn’t really matter when you’re trying to sell with sentences.
Hard to argue, based on their results, huh?
Which is good new for you, my millionaire-in-the-making. If you’re willing to pick up a book and read deep and wide about your area of expertise – even if you’re “just not a writer” – you too can whip up seven figure sales messages.
If you come up with a great hook, follow best practices, model proven templates, and, per Agora, look for four things and ask five questions before going live with what you’ve written.
And here they are.
So read the copy out loud and listen for anything that’s: (1) confusing, (2) unbelievable, (3) boring, (4) awkward/distracting.
As you’re reading, if you notice any of those four things, mark it down, then go back and edit it. So if it’s confusing, clarify. If something sounds too good to be true, add proof to support it. If it’s bland, spice it up. If there’s a part that’s choppy or it drags on or maybe it’s not necessary, remove it.
Once that’s done, you need to ask five questions:
(1) Does the lead (the first 100 to 600 words) make it clear why the prospect should keep reading, watching, or listening right now as opposed to later?
(2) Does the sense of emotional excitement that’s created in the lead continue consistently until the end?
(3) Does the writer come across as a likeable person?
(4) Does the copy read and sound like a conversation?
(5) Does the copy include a false close (when you hit ’em with another benefit or promise right when they’re expecting you to ask for money) and then add an additional liquidating benefit (act now or miss out on blank)?
And, same as before, edit. Tweak until nos become yeses to give your words maximum horsepower.
Remember: this was straight from Agora. A billion-dollar-a-year digital publisher. It’s what they’re using to turn non-writers into seven and eight-figure copywriters.
You’re welcome. And so am I. (Thanks Agora.)
Now. If you want to really geek-out on this stuff and reverse-engineer these guys, here’s a list of AF’s publications. Pick one or two, go snoop around their websites, opt-in to their email lists, and pay close attention to their offers. Study their sales letters, make swipe files, rewrite them by hand, get dirty. It’ll help, big-time.